Quantcast
Connect with us

Budget cuts will mean smaller U.S. Army: general

Published

on

Under mounting budget pressure, the US Army probably will have to shrink the size of its force below a planned target of 520,000 troops, the new Army chief of staff said Thursday.

General Ray Odierno, who took over as Army chief Wednesday, said the push to reduce the deficit would make it difficult to maintain the Pentagon’s minimum figure.

“Do I think we’re going to end up at 520,000? Probably not. So, what is the right number?” he told reporters at the Pentagon.

ADVERTISEMENT

Army planners were looking at whether the force would be able to fight two wars at the same time with 520,000 troops, he said.

“We’re still doing some analysis,” Odierno said. “We’re working through several different scenarios that will help us to figure that out.”

Ensuring the ability to fight two wars simultaneously has long been a pillar of US military doctrine, though it has come under under question in recent years.

Asked if the Army could wage two wars at the same with less than 520,000 soldiers, Odierno said: “I think at 520, we could probably do it fairly close. Below 520, we can’t.”

Odierno warned that moving too quickly to downsize the Army could carry risks and undermine the efficacy of the force, saying it was important to retain a sufficient number of mid-level officers and sergeants.

ADVERTISEMENT

“If you go too small too fast, it takes away your flexibility,” he said.

Defense officials are examining a range of potential budget cuts and weighing what missions or tasks might have to be sacrificed or scaled back as a result.

The Army absorbed the brunt of two protracted ground wars in Iraq and Afghanistan over the past decade, expanding the size of its force to keep up.

ADVERTISEMENT

The US Army now has about 569,000 active duty troops, with a temporary increase of 22,000 forces set to run out in 2014.

Defense analysts have questioned the likelihood of another massive counter-insurgency campaign after a difficult ten years in Iraq and Afghanistan, while former defense secretary Robert Gates had urged military commanders to adjust their thinking about future threats.

ADVERTISEMENT

But Odierno said he could not rule out the possibility of another major counter-insurgency mission.

“I am not willing to say that we will never do that again,” he said.


Report typos and corrections to: [email protected].
READ COMMENTS - JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Continue Reading

2020 Election

So long, Steve King: 9-term white supremacist GOP congressman from Iowa loses primary

Published

on

U.S. Congressman Steve King, a nine-term Republican of Iowa, has just lost his primary to a GOP challenger. It's a huge fall from grace: In 2014 The Des Moines Register labeled the former earth-moving company founder a "presidential kingmaker."

But his racist, white nationalist, white supremacist, anti-immigrant, anti-Semitic, homophobic, transphobic, biphobic remarks and disturbing ties to far right radical European politicians – including one he endorsed who has ties to a neo-Nazi, finally caught up with him.

Continue Reading

Breaking Banner

When the president’s son-in-law truly was a great success

Published

on

For many Americans, the idea of the president tasking his son-in-law with solving national, even international, crises, seems problematic, if not absurd. But it happened once before and turned out to be the kind of “great success story” our current first family wants us to believe in again. Slightly over a century ago, as the US mobilized for the First World War, the nation faced devastating breakdowns of its financial and transport systems. In response, President Woodrow Wilson leaned heavily on his talented and experienced Treasury Secretary, William McAdoo, who just happened to be his son-in-law. Looking back at this episode tells us a lot about what makes for successful emergency management at the highest levels of government.

Continue Reading
 

Breaking Banner

Here are 7 ways Donald Trump is just like Henry Ford — and why that’s not good for American democracy

Published

on

On May 21, speaking at the Ford Motor Company’s Rawsonville plant in Ypsilanti, Michigan, Donald Trump paid his latest homage to Henry Ford, lauding the family’s “good bloodlines” with Ford’s great grandson sitting in the front row.

Ford, like Trump, was obsessed with bloodlines—with the idea that race and genetic origins determined who counted as the “best people.”

Continue Reading
 
 
You need honest news coverage. Help us deliver it. Join Raw Story Investigates for $1. Go ad-free.
close-image